The Downtown Emergency Service Center (DESC) provides integrated services including housing, emergency shelter, crisis intervention and healthcare to thousands of homeless and formerly homeless people every day.
We fight for public resources and policies that serve our most vulnerable and marginalized neighbors: those living with mental illness, substance use disorders, and other disabilities. We believe that everyone deserves the space to exist and a place to call home.
DESC meets people wherever they are and accepts them as they are.
We are a national pioneer, innovator, and leader in the Housing First movement. Housing First is now the dominant service approach promoted in national policy. We innovate and challenge convention until we find what works, and then measure, evaluate and share what we’ve learned as widely as possible.
DESC works to end the homelessness of vulnerable people, particularly those living with serious mental illnesses or substance use disorders. Through partnerships and an integrated array of comprehensive services, treatment and housing, we give people the opportunity to reach their highest potential. At DESC, uncommon efforts produce uncommon results that eliminate homelessness, one person at a time.